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The diamond formation worked for Leyton Orient at Gillingham, but will Steve Davis stick with it?

PUBLISHED: 11:00 08 November 2017

Leyton Orient midfielder Alex Lawless looks to find a team-mate against Gillingham (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Leyton Orient midfielder Alex Lawless looks to find a team-mate against Gillingham (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Simon O'Connor Photography

The O’s looked better in attack and defence with a 4-1-2-1-2 formation on Saturday, but have previously enjoyed some success with five at the back

Steve Davis will spend some time this week pondering what formation Leyton Orient should use away to Ebbsfleet United in the National League on Saturday.

The O’s have favoured a 3-5-2/5-3-2 in recent weeks and earned some success with that tactic.

But after a lacklustre first half at Gillingham last weekend, Davis switched to a 4-1-2-1-2 and it saw Orient fight back.

A 2-1 loss in the first round of the FA Cup was the end result, but the east Londoners went down fighting at Priestfield Stadium.

The dilemma now is what formation to use at Stonebridge Road against a Fleet side which have gone three games without a win.

Davis said: “The diamond is just another way of playing and something we’ve done before and it works if you are prepared to play the type of football we played in the second half at Gillingham.

“It was good to watch and we got behind them and in around the sides, so it was the right thing to do to put more pressure on them.

“We didn’t ask any questions of their full-backs in the first half and it was far too easy, but playing one off the front two worked and it is something we can fall back on or start with because the players understand how to play it.”

The introduction of Alex Lawless also helped O’s at the weekend with the midfielder offering much-needed control in the centre of the pitch.

Orient were second best to Gillingham throughout the first half, but that all changed after the restart.

Lawless could earn a starting spot for O’s at Ebbsfleet, though one player who won’t feature in Kent is Freddy Moncur.

He has extended his loan spell with Bishop’s Stortford for another month after impressing during recent weeks.

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